Pakistani Mother Who Killed Her Teen Daughter in Italy After She Refused to Marry Her Cousin, Arrested

Nazia Shaheen and Saman Abbas
Nazia Shaheen and Saman Abbas Twitter

The mother of Saman Abbas, a teenager who was killed by her family in Italy in 2021, has been arrested in the disputed Himalayan region of Kashmir.

The mother, 51-year-old Nazia Shaheen, was convicted of the murder in Italy but had fled the country and was on the run for three years. The arrest was a result of a cooperation between Interpol and the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA).

Abbas' Body was Found at an Abandoned Farmhouse in November 2022, Parents Fled After the Murder

Abbas, 18, went missing from the Italian city of Reggio Emilia on April 30, 2021, and her body was found in November 2022. Her body was dug up in November 2022 in an abandoned farmhouse near the fields where her father worked in northern Italy — a year and a half after she was last seen alive on surveillance video walking near the same fields with her parents.

After the murder of Abbas, an autopsy revealed that the young woman had a broken neck bone, possibly caused by strangulation. She had emigrated as a teenager from Pakistan to a farm town, Novellara, in Italy's northern region of Emilia-Romagna. Abbas' parents flew from Milan to Pakistan after the murder.

Abbas Killed for Refusing to Marry Cousin in Pakistan, Posting Photo of Herself Kissing Boyfriend

Saman Abbas
Saman Abbas Facebook

Italian police had said she was killed by her family on May 1, 2021 after she refused her family's demands to marry a cousin in their homeland, as reported by The Associated Press.

Authorities in Italy have Abbas had quickly embraced Western ways after moving to Italy, including shedding her headscarf and dating a young man of her choice. In one social media post, she and her Pakistani boyfriend were shown kissing on a street in the regional capital, Bologna.

According to Italian investigators, that kiss enraged Abbas' parents, who wanted her to marry a cousin in Pakistan. Abbas had reportedly told her boyfriend that she feared for her life, because of her refusal to marry an older man in her homeland.

Shaheen to be Extradited Back to Italy

Shaheen will be extradited back to Italy, where a court last year convicted her, her husband and the victim's uncle of murdering Abbas. In August 2023, her husband, Shabbar Abbas, who also arrived in Pakistan after the murder, was extradited to Italy and is now in prison.

The couple was sentenced in absentia for life by a court in Reggio Emilia in December 2023 after being found guilty of homicide. Abbas' uncle, Danish Hasnain, was handed a 14-year prison term by a court in Reggio Emilia.